Buzz, takeaways and risers from the Combine — plus, what it all means for the 49ers

Everything you need to know after a week of workouts, interviews and measurements in Indy

Tommy Call
March 05, 2019 - 6:09 am

Analyzing a series of workouts, interviews and measurements to decide an athlete's future in the NFL seems like quite a concept, but here we are.

The 2019 NFL scouting combine is over and we are now only 50 days away from the first round of the NFL Draft. Jokes about the underwear olympics and staring contests aside, there was still a lot to take away from this year's annual NFL Scouting Combine.

Who showed out, who disappointed and how does it all affect the San Francisco 49ers? Let’s take a look:

Kyler Murray Mania is a great thing (for the 49ers)

If you’ve read anything I’ve written or said you’re not surprised Kyler Murray is looking like the favorite for the first pick in the 2019 draft. Murray’s 5’10, 205 lb measurement at the Combine only grew his skyrocketing draft stock. Whether the Cardinals are interested in Murray or not, the hype around him is a positive for the 49ers in a few ways.

One, the 49ers could land Ohio State pass rusher Nick Bosa, who looked to be as good as gone when the NFL regular season ended. The craze over Murray puts Bosa back into the discussion for the 49ers.

If Bosa is taken number one overall, quarterback needy teams could offer a Godfather Package to move up to the No. 2 pick. For a team that has limited picks in a draft that is deep trading back could be a nice option if Bosa isn’t available. The 49ers could acquire more picks in a draft class that is top heavy, but deep with upside later.

Regardless of what you think of Murray as a player, the buzz that he’s created by choosing football over baseball makes this draft incredibly exciting and whenever a team decides to draft him should benefit the 49ers.

Nick Bosa and Quinnen Williams are The Dudes

It’s rare when players go wire-to-wire throughout draft season as the classes top prospects, but that’s the case for Bosa and Alabama’s Quinnen Williams.

Both Bosa and Williams put up solid Combine numbers while checking many boxes in Indianapolis. Bosa put the concerns about his core injury to rest while Williams blew everyone away with his 4.87 40 time at 303 lbs.

Bosa looks like a plug and play double-digit sack guy, while Williams looks to be a dominant interior defensive player with skills very few possess for a player his age and size. It’s clear Bosa and Williams are the cream of this classes crop and their performances at the combine only solidified that. The 49ers will have the opportunity to land at least one of this classes elite prospects.

Jachai Polite, yikes

No player had a worse combine than Florida edge, Jachai Polite. Polite had question marks surrounding his maturity before Indianapolis and now has even more red flags after. Polite made negative comments about specific teams (the 49ers), wavered on questions about watching film and just looked overall unprepared. To make things worse Polite looked a little out of shape. His nightmare of a week ended with him leaving Indy with a hamstring injury.

I’ve been a loyal Polite fan, ranking him as high as third overall on my big board, but now he’s looking like a Day 2 prospect at best.

WR class is legit

Outside of Murray, there was no player who got more hype than Ole Miss wide receiver/alien, D.K. Metcalf. Metcalf looked like the Ivan Drago of wide receivers at the combine. His 6’3, 228 lb size stacked with his 4.33 40 time made him this combine’s darling. While his 3-cone and short shuttle results were alarming, Metcalf is almost cemented into the WR1 ranking.

Now, will Metcalf be in play in the second round for the 49ers? Probably not, but don’t fret, Metcalf wasn’t the only receiver to light up the combine. Multiple players showed they had the skills to be Jimmy Garoppolo’s next weapon.

Missouri’s Emmanuel Hall, Ohio State’s Paris Campbell and Georgia’s Mecole Hardman all tested well and could be had in the mid rounds. Other wide receivers like Andy Isabella from UMass and Antoine Wesley from Texas Tech also look like names to watch in the 49ers pursuit for their next pass catcher in an extremely underrated wide receiver group. As exciting as it would be for the 49ers to land Metcalf in Shanahan’s offense, this receiver class has legit options past the second round.

CB class needs work

The cornerback group in this draft class has been labeled murky for awhile and the combine didn’t do much help.

Byron Murphy and Greedy Williams have been atop the board and both performed well in Indy, but neither separated themselves. While the 49ers won’t be looking to grab a corner until probably the second round or after they’ll need to be looking at players like Isaiah Johnson from Houston, and Michigan State’s Justin Layne. These players have some upside, but will need serious development at the next level, which might be scary for 49ers fans.

The 49ers already have several projects in the secondary and haven’t been ultra-successful in developing players like Ahkello Witherspoon, Tavarious Moore and D.J. Reed. Can we trust the 49ers staff to develop another project corner?  

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